The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Friday, revealed how former Governor of Zamfara State, now a Senator, Ahmed Yerima, allegedly mismanaging N464.82m out of N1b loan meant for the repair of Gusau Dam in 2006.
The agency also said it had made its final submission before Justice Bello Tukur Gummi of Zamfara State High Court 5, sitting in Gusau, after it had tendered 25 exhibits and called six witnesses against the former Governor, who is standing trial for the mismanagement of the said sum.
Meanwhile, Yerima has entered a no case submission before the court in the trial.
A statement by the spokesperson of the ICPC, Mrs. Mrs Rasheedat A. Okoduwa (mni), said the statement made by the former Governor corroborated the charges preferred against him.
The statement said: “The commission’s prosecuting counsel led by Mrs. Christiana Onuogu, after calling six witnesses and tendering 25 exhibits made their final submission while the counsel for the ex-governor, Mahmud Magaji (SAN), tendered 8 exhibits.
“In her submission, Mrs. Onuogu argued that the prosecution had proved the essential elements of the offences with which the former Governor was being charged, and that the principle of a no-case submission made by him failed where the defendant had explanations to make in response to the charges against him.
“She also averred that the defendant’s confessional statement that he had diverted part of the N1bn UBA loan to other projects and services corroborated the charges preferred against him.
“The action, according to her, was contrary to and punishable under Section 22 (5) of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000.
“Mrs. Onuogu, therefore, prayed the court to dismiss the no-case submission entered by the defence counsel.
“Having listened to the submissions made by both the defence and the prosecution, the trial judge adjourned the case to 5th December, 2017 for ruling on the no-case submission”.
It should be recalled that Senator Yerima had earlier been arraigned in 2016 by the ICPC before Justice Bello Shinkafi of High Court 4, Gusau, Zamfara State on a 19-count charge bordering on the alleged diversion of N385.5m and other sums from the N1bn loan meant for the repair of a collapsed dam and rehabilitation of flood victims while he was Governor. The case was subsequently transferred to Justice Gummi with the agreement of both the defence and prosecuting counsel on account of several adjournments because of the Judge’s ill-health.